Property firm sees 2019 staying buyer’s market as sector still flat

Rahim and Co International Executive Chairman, Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Abdul Rahman, speaks during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur February 19, 2019. ― Picture by Hari Anggara
Rahim and Co International Executive Chairman, Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Abdul Rahman, speaks during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur February 19, 2019. ― Picture by Hari Anggara

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KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 19 — Property consulting firm Rahim & Co said 2019 will continue to be a buyer’s market, attributing this to the remaining overhang and newly-introduced financial schemes to facilitate borrowing.

Executive chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Abdul Rahman also said the mixed results in Malaysia’s property market now were a reflection of the adjustment phase within the economic and political climate following last year’s general election.

“Longer consolidation period will be expected and we all hope the new changes made will bring positive results sufficient to ignite the property market momentum.

“We foresee 2019 to be another flat year as the government continues to implement changes to the country’s property market with new policies and initiatives,” he said during the firm’s Property Market Review 2018/2019 at the Royal Selangor Golf Club here.

However, Abdul Rahim said unsold residential units remained a concern, with a total of 43,219 units worth RM29.47 billion sitting idle across the country.

He acknowledged that the government introduced measures to address this in Budget 2019, but said it was still too soon to gauge their effectiveness.

“The execution of such plans is important for the success of addressing the provision of sufficient appropriate and proper affordable homes to the market,” he said.

The firm said that in the first half of 2018, transaction numbers continued to decline by 2.4 per cent year-on-year, but noted that this was still better than the drop in 2017 over the same period.

The fall was even softer as at end of third quarter of 2018 whereby the drop has moderated to 0.3 per cent, recording a total of 228,867 transactions. 

The total value of transactions dropped at a slightly steeper pace at -1.4 per cent to record at RM100.85 billion worth in transactions.

According to data provided by the Valuation and Property Services Department (JPPH), Johor recorded the highest number of residential overhang at 13,767 units followed by Selangor at 7,233 units and Kuala Lumpur at 5,114 units.

The firm’s director of research, Sulaiman Saheh, said the focus would remain on the affordable segment as overhang numbers persisted.

“The residential segment will take another one to two years (to recover)... the growth in residential transactions is going to be more dependent on the effective income growth of the population.

“In terms of the office market, recovery will take a little more than one year simply because of the incoming supply as well as the global economic situation, while growth will continue on for the industrial segment riding the e-commerce and the Industrial Revolution 4.0 wave,” he said.

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